Developmental Disabilities: an Emphasis on Autism Spectrum Disorders and Family Functioning from an Adlerian Perspective

The focus of this literature review is on how family functioning is affected when a child is diagnosed with chronic emotional, developmental, or behavioral problems. Particular attention has been given to families of children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders and viewing the effects from an Adlerian perspective. This review explores the disorder, models of stress and sources of stress in families of children with the disorder, the resources and supports that mediate and moderate these stressors, and the importance of perception and appraisal in coping with the disorder and its impact on the family. Alfred Adler‘s theory of Individual Psychology, commonly known as Adlerian psychology, has been used as a framework for understanding, coping with, and responding to the stress ASD diagnoses bring to families.

Cynthia Engelkes
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